6.8/10
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The Scalphunters (1968)

Not Rated | | Comedy, Western | 2 April 1968 (USA)
Forced to trade his valuable furs for a well-educated escaped slave, a rugged trapper vows to recover the pelts from the Indians and later the renegades that killed them.

Director:

Sydney Pollack

Writer:

William W. Norton (as William Norton)
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Burt Lancaster ... Joe Bass
Shelley Winters ... Kate
Telly Savalas ... Jim Howie
Ossie Davis ... Joseph Lee
Dabney Coleman ... Jed
Paul Picerni ... Frank
Dan Vadis ... Yuma
Armando Silvestre ... Two Crows
Nick Cravat ... Yancy
Tony Epper Tony Epper ... Scalphunter
Chuck Roberson ... Scalphunter
John Epper John Epper ... Scalphunter
Jack Williams Jack Williams ... Scalphunter
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Storyline

Trapper Joe is on his way to the town with all of his gain of hides of the last winter. However a group of Indians stops him and takes all of his hides, leaving him the escaped slave Joseph instead. But Joe has no use for Joseph and is determined to get his property back and follows them. Before he can do anything, the Indians are raided themselves by a group of scalphunters under the greedy Howie. Not only the hides, but also Joseph falls into their hands. Now Joe follows them alone and tries to trick the numerical superior group out of his hides. Written by Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

He'll stop at nothing to take back what's his. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Western

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Burt Lancaster had met Ossie Davis on the historic, Martin Luther King "Civil Rights March on Washington" on Aug. 28, 1963. This chance meeting, led to Davis being cast as "Joseph Winfield Lee" the runaway slave in the film. Lancaster also stated, that first time screenwriter, William Norton submited such a unique, clever script, that he just had to do the film. See more »

Goofs

At c.34 minutes the guitarist plays only open strings despite the more elaborate soundtrack. See more »

Quotes

Kate: [to the other prostitutes as they realize they are captives of the Indians] What the hell, they're only men!
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Connections

Featured in Film Review: Burt Lancaster (1968) See more »

Soundtracks

In Our Lovely Deseret
(uncredited)
Lyrics by Eliza R. Snow
Music by George Frederick Root
Performed by Shelley Winters
See more »

User Reviews

Sydney Pollick and Burt Lancaster together. Overlooked gold!
3 August 1999 | by H.J.See all my reviews

In the late 1960's and the early 1970's the United States was deeply embroiled in Viet Nam with all it's ramifications. It was so far from "the best of times" that it was difficult to laugh at much. Also this was the period where the Western film fell out of style. It was unfortunate timing for several excellent movies, "The Scalphunters" among them. If this movie were released tomorrow it would become an unqualified hit.

Burt Lancaster is at his cynical best, poking fun at everything the Hollywood Western and Burt Lancaster ever imagined themselves to be. Ossie Davis performs the nearly impossible task of playing a highly intelligent black slave on the lam without loosing perspective on the comic genius of the script. Tully Savallas plays the odious (And we suspect odorous) oaf with style and dignity (if that's possible) and Shelley Winters does the same for his female counterpart. And the Indians, the long-suffering, patient, bemused Indians dutifully dying and then returning to fight again just as often as the miraculous movie 6-shooters can get off 20 rounds or so.

In command of all this chaos is the unmistakably sure and steady hand of Sidny Pollick with his comic genius to rely on and a smart, literate script to form the framework. Perhaps this movie should be titled "'The Crimson Pirate' meets 'Toostie'".

If you've got a sense of humor and are able to suspend you disbelief for a couple of hours or so, "The Scalphunters" will give you a good evenings entertainment. If you enjoy it, try "There was a Crooked Man" with Henry Fonda and Kurt Douglas.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

2 April 1968 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Scalphunters See more »

Filming Locations:

Chihuahua, Chihuahua, Mexico See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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